Working at a museum allows for the opportunity to meet people from all over the world, and Banting House is no exception. If anything, it is one of the most international museums I have ever been to – we get at least as many international visitors as we do domestic ones. Just this week, we have had visitors from all across Canada and the United States, the U.K., the Netherlands, China, and Sri Lanka!
There are many reasons why people travel so far to come to Banting House. Some people are here because of the effect Dr. Banting has personally had on their lives – people who have loved ones with diabetes or have diabetes themselves. We also get many doctors and endocrinologists here – people who specialize in diabetes research and are inspired by Banting’s work. In addition, we always get lots of people who are simply interested in Canadian history, and have come to see the home of a great Canadian!
Even if people are limited by travel time and expense, our blog still highlights many aspects of the museum and Dr. Banting’s life. Our readership here is very international too – in 2015, we had visitors from 92 countries read our blog!
Because people travel from so far away to visit, often the museum has to be flexible and adjust to the visitors’ schedules, rather than to our own strict museum hours. When someone has driven or flown thousands of miles to be here, it is our job as tour guides to make their experience as great as possible, even if it means opening a little early or closing a little late! Our visitors have often given so much to be here that we want to do the same.
So the next time that you come in to the museum, keep an eye out – you never know who you will meet or where they will be from! It is all part of the exciting and often hectic life of a tour guide at Banting House.
This post was written by Kylie Smith. Kylie recently graduated with a B.A. in history and anthropology from The University of Western Ontario, and will be attending teachers college in the fall.